DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DENNIS KUNKEL MICROSCOPY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Coloured scanning electron micrograph (SEM) of Male parasitic wasp head (Nasonia vitripennis). Nasonia is a genus of Pteromalid parasitoid wasps that parasitize primarily blowflies and fleshflies. Nasonia spp. A female lays her eggs in a blowfly or fleshfly pupa through her ovipositor. The eggs develop into larvae within one or two days. The larvae then feed on the fly pupa as a nutritional source. The larvae will continue to develop over the next eight to nine days, and then pupate, forming a protective casing around the pupae. Nasonia remain in the pupal stage for three to four days and then break free from their pupal cases as adults. These adults eventually emerge by chewing a hole through the host casing. These parasitoid wasps have been the subject of genetic, ecological, evolutionary and developmental research for over 40 years. Magnification: x50 when shortest axis printed at 25.
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